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Unread 11-11-2012, 11:44 AM   #1
Falclon
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Plastic?

I am looking for a clear plastic that can form around my back, be sewn on to the base of my costume (sort of like clear bra straps?), and still hold a bit of weight without being warped. The one I'm least worried about is it being sewn because I can find other ways of attaching it, but it still needs to be able to have things connected to it. This piece will be supporting a pair of wings on my back. Any suggestions?
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Unread 11-11-2012, 02:37 PM   #2
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I assume you want clear plastic as a means of creating the effect of the wings sprouting naturally from your skin?
Most sheet vinyl is much too light to support any kind of weight (it deforms and stretches very easily) as well as the fact that it is very shiny. I'd build as flat a harness as possible, color it fleshtoned with paint or make up, then use dancers spandex to disguise it. Here are some references for the flesh tones spandex stuff, that's what makes these gymnastics outfits work: http://www.london2012.com/gymnastics...mnastics-final
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Unread 11-11-2012, 03:51 PM   #3
Millions_Knives
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T.T
wish plastic skills were more accessible to ppl
i can make this but my plan is useless as most pll dont have the tools
(plastics why do you mock me)
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Unread 11-12-2012, 10:37 AM   #4
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I really don't think there is a material out there that is 100% what you're looking for. Probably the best way to do it is to go to "http://www.sdplastics.com/" buy one of their cheap clear plastics. (If you can find someone local to sell acrylic that's even better) Then drill holes in it to be able to sew it to your cos. As was previously stated sheet vinyl might not be the best way to go.

Fortunately you can heat plastic sheets to contour to whatever shape you need. Heat guns are less than $8 at harborfreight.com

I've also had the opportunity to muck around with clear plexiglass as well. It shapes really easily as well so that is also a good option to support weight.

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Unread 11-12-2012, 06:25 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Penlowe View Post
I assume you want clear plastic as a means of creating the effect of the wings sprouting naturally from your skin?
Most sheet vinyl is much too light to support any kind of weight (it deforms and stretches very easily) as well as the fact that it is very shiny. I'd build as flat a harness as possible, color it fleshtoned with paint or make up, then use dancers spandex to disguise it. Here are some references for the flesh tones spandex stuff, that's what makes these gymnastics outfits work: http://www.london2012.com/gymnastics...mnastics-final
That's probably a good idea, what would you recommend for making a flat harness? I didn't think of disguising it with the flesh tone fabric.

@StabbityBlkMage, I already have a heat gun but which of their plastics would you recommend? They have so many options, and I could probably try and look for the one you suggest locally. I think I could use the plastic and then disguise it with Penlowe's idea.
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Unread 11-12-2012, 08:12 PM   #6
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Yeah I agree there are a ton of options. It would really depend on what is cheapest at what thickness you need (since you're really truly the only one that knows what they want out of the material). The reason I say locally is because at all the plastic shops I've been to they have had a scrap bin for DIRT cheap. I got a 2'x4' sheet of acrylic for free because the previous client didn't want it in anymore for a commission.

So yeah I primarily work with clear acrylic, but others have been pushing me to plexi. They are both really similar so I would just use price as the determining factor.

Good luck!
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Unread 11-13-2012, 06:11 PM   #7
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You can use heavy clear vinyl if you need something flexible, so long as you design the rigging properly to handle the torsional forces of the wings. But I agree with Penlowe. The fleshtoned technique tends to look much better, particularly when blended well with makeup.

What material you need beneath the spandex is dependent on the design of your wings, your costume, and your harness. There are a number of techniques; some involve a rigid harness, and some use flexible strapping.

As far as sewing, you can sew almost anything to anything. The trick is just to predrill or prepunch the required holes, and then sew it on using an appropriate hand sewing stitch (I tend to use the classic saddle stitch due to my leather background). One secure pattern to use for the holes is the box with an 'X' through it. You'll commonly see this pattern used to secure bookbag straps in place.


Quote:
Originally Posted by StabbityBlkMage View Post
So yeah I primarily work with clear acrylic, but others have been pushing me to plexi.
"Plexiglass" is a brand name for acrylic sheet (aka Poly methyl-methacrylate). They're the same thing. The common alternative is the stronger, but more expensive "polycarbonate", aka "Lexan".
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Unread 11-14-2012, 03:41 PM   #8
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Thanks! Your post was very helpful. Do you have any links to the methods you are talking about? I have found several wing tutorials online but none of them were very useful for me.
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